|January 25, 2020||1st||2nd||3rd||Final|
|1||13:11||BSU||Ierullo, Alex (Combs, Charlie )|
|2||02:20||BSU||Cardelli, Nick (Brady, Adam , Driscoll, Zach)|
|3||06:43||BSU||Kirkup, Tyler (Rosen, Elias , Ierullo, Alex)|
|3||15:59||MINNST||Gerads, Dallas (French, Josh , Lutz, Reggie)|
|3||17:33||MINNST||Gerard, Charlie (Mackey, Connor , Smith, Nathan)|
|3||19:10||BSU||Cardelli, Nick (Brady, Adam , Armour, Ross)|
|Shots on Goal||18||50|
MANKATO, Minn. (Mayo Clinic Health System Event Center) – Trailing 3-0 with more than six minutes to play, No. 3 Minnesota State University, Mankato pulled its goaltender, Dryden McKay, to press Bemidji State University. The high-octane Mavericks scored a pair of goals to reel the Beavers in, but goaltender Zach Driscoll turned aside a career-high 48 shots and Nick Cardelli netted and empty-net goal with 49 seconds to play to lift the Beavers to a 4-2 Western Collegiate Hockey Association victory.
The victory marked just the second time BSU has defeated MSU in the last 12 meetings between the teams (2-9-1) and marked the first time the Beavers have won in Mankato, Minn. since Nov. 12, 2016. It also marked the end of the Mavericks’ eight-game winning streak.
Outshot 50-18, Bemidji State held the league’s top-scoring team to two goals, and in both cases, the Mavericks needed an extra attacker to do it.
In addition to BSU's Cardelli, who netted a pair of goals in the game, Alex Ierullo logged a goal and an assist and Adam Brady added a pair of helpers.
For the second straight night, the Beavers jumped out to an early lead. Just 13:11 into the game, the Mavericks turned the puck over in the neutral zone. Charlie Combs picked up the puck and found Ierullo in the slot and the sophomore beat McKay for a 1-0 BSU lead.
The one-goal lead would last 2:20 into the second period when the Beavers would extend it to 2-0. Just 1:12 into the second frame, MSU’s Ian Scheid was escorted to the to the penalty box after a tripping infraction and the Beavers converted the error into a goal 68 seconds later on a power-play goal by Cardelli set up by Brady and Driscoll.
Six minutes and 43 seconds after the puck dropped in the third period, BSU stretched its lead to 3-0 when Elias Rosén wired a shot from the point that was redirected in front by Tyler Kirkup.
Trailing by three goals late, Minnesota State pulled McKay with more than six minutes to play. The Beavers held off MSU and its extra attacker for nearly two minutes, but at the 15:59 mark Dallas Gerads fired a shot that Driscoll got a piece of, but trickled over the goal line to break up the shutout and spark the Mavericks’ rally.
With 2:27 on the clock , the Mavericks struck again. Charlie Gerard redirected a shot into the back of the net to reel the Beavers to within a goal.
Cardelli scored an empty-net goal with 49 seconds to play to regain a two-goal lead and buy the Beavers much-needed breathing room. With 23 seconds left, BSU’s Ethan Somoza was whistled for tripping setting up the Mavericks, who already had McKay off for an extra attacker, with a 6-on-4.
Driscoll and the Beavers held off the charge and preserved the 4-2 victory.
For the second consecutive night, Bemidji State converted its only power-play opportunity of the game. The Beavers finished the perfect special teams night 1-for-1 on the man advantage and was 3-for-3 on the penalty kill.
Bemidji State, now 14-8-4 overall and 14-4-2-1 in WCHA play, to hold onto second place in the WCHA standings and keep the Mavericks within reach with eight games to play. The Beavers return to Bemidji, Minn. and Sanford Center Jan. 31 and Feb. 1 when they continue league play with a two-game series versus Bowling Green State University. Opening faceoff is set for 7:07 p.m. Friday and 6:07 p.m. Saturday.